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Comment Re:Really? (Score 1) 821

Air travel has a damn-near impeccable safety record in terms of deaths-per-flight. Better than most hospitals do in terms of deaths-per-ER-visit. Seriously, you're significantly more likely to die as a result of going to the hospital (improper sterilisation, exposure to pathogens, and surgical foulups) than you are because you decided to fly. I've lost track of where I found the numbers, but I'm sure it's readily Googleable.

Remember kids, just because you hear more about plane crashes and violent homicides doesn't mean that the incidence rate is going up. It's much more rare than it was thirty or forty years ago; we just have better coverage these days.

Comment Re:Technically... (Score 2, Insightful) 554

The English language, sadly, is not standardised, which is why we have differences like “kerb” and “curb”, “lorry” and “truck”, “lift” and “elevator”, and so on, and so forth.

French, on the other hand, has L’Académie française, an institute that actually does define a standard French language. Québec also has their own OQLF (who will have none of that bastard English in their French, merci beaucoups) and they’re both happily ignored by the Acadians and northern Québécois, who speak their own dialects and who are almost completely incomprehensible by people who speak real French (Joual in particular is nasty; it’s barely considered French).

Okay, so having a standardised version of French hasn’t exactly helped matters, but there is a Defined French Language, unlike English. That’s what happens when there are two major world powers, both speaking the same language, neither of whom will bow to other in such affairs!

Comment Re:I ran out of names for my workstation (Score 1) 688

Well, okay, a little more accurately: during your tenure at the company, and probably the lifetime of the company, you'll never run out of eligible names. Unless, somehow, your company name is Blue Sun... but even then, the next admin after you will probably decide on a "better" naming scheme.

Another scheme that I was a party to was based on batches. I worked for the Faculty of Computer Science for a while and every batch of computers we bought (approx. 40 at a time) was given a different naming scheme, so we tended to have matching names for the labs throughout the building. One was world capitals, one was chemical elements, but my favourite was guitar equipment.. we had three or four musicians in the twelve-person admin staff, so it was pretty much a given.

Comment Re:I ran out of names for my workstation (Score 1) 688

I once used stellar bodies, in progressive order away from Sol. I gave the company president permanent use of SOL and PROXIMACENTAURI for his desktop and laptop, respectively. Everything else was in order of purchase. You'll never run out, and it gives you (if you maintain your familiarity with what stars are where) a rough idea of how old the thing is. The only hard part is finding the right table of stars to work from, and deciding how to deal with the the eventual alpha-sirius, beta-sirius, gamma-sirius issues if you want to just call one SIRIUS.

Comment Pandora v. MeeMix (Score 1) 248

First tried out MeeMix shortly after moving from Halifax to Toronto (early months of 2007), discovering that they'd finally started cracking down on non-US IPs, and saw an ad for it on Facecrook. Here's the thing: MeeMix has some pretty cool interface options that I wish Pandora had. I couldn't give a toss about the social aspects of MeeMix--I don't care who listening to the same bands that I've never met--but I really like their sliding scale of like/dislike of a song. Pandora's very... polar about it. Thumbs up, meh, or die-in-a-fire. I really prefer being able to say anything between "This is awesome, I want to hear more like this", "This is pretty cool, I like it", "I'm not a huge fan, but it's not terrible" and "Seriously?!" before getting to die-in-a-fire. That being said, Pandora's been trained quite well. I have an entire station of nothing but early-to-mid-nineties alt rock (I can listen at work, I don't know why). It's great, it reminds me of when music was good. MeeMix hasn't been trained nearly so well, but they also introduced me to Fluke and Sparta. I say, if you miss Pandora, go with MeeMix. Takes a bit of doing to train it as well as Pandora, but they've got some pretty good stuff in there that might surprise you. And the eleven-point scale of like/dislike (and that doesn't even include the "I never want to hear this again" option) is great. That being said.. I really wish I could get Pandora at home.

Submission + - RIAA trial verdict is in: jury finds Thomas liable ( 1

jdogs60 writes: "Duluth, Minnesota — After just four hours of deliberation and two days of testimony, a jury found that Jammie Thomas was liable for infringing the record labels' copyrights on all 24 the 24 recordings at issue in the case of Capitol Records v. Jammie Thomas. The jury awarded $9,250 in statutory damages per song, after finding that the infringement was "willful," out of a possible total of $150,000 per song. The grand total? $222,000 in damages."

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